Paragon stereoviewer

United States, c. 1900

Object Equipment On display
Photograph by Egmont Contreras, ACMI.

Three-dimensional images have been around for more than 180 years – they just weren’t called ‘3D’. Stereoscopic images are two separate pictures with slightly different perspectives. A stereoscopic viewer mimics how we see so that the two images converge into a single three-dimensional picture.

British inventor Charles Wheatstone discovered this process in 1838 and used a device as big as a table to make it work. Another British scientist, David Brewster, later simplified and shrank the viewer into a portable, hand-held device.

Stereoscopic viewers were popular home entertainment in the Victorian era. They let people see 3D engineering wonders, like new skyscrapers and railroads, as well as sightseeing slides from across the natural world.

Collection

In ACMI's collection

On display until

16 February 2031

ACMI: Gallery 1

Credits

creator

The Keystone View Company

Production places
United States
Production dates
c. 1900

Appears in

Group of items

Stereoscopic viewers and cards

Explore

Collection metadata

ACMI Identifier

AEO176184

Curatorial section

The Story of the Moving Image → Moving Pictures → MI-08. Immersive Innovations → MI-08-C01

Measurements

30 x 50 x 20cm

Object Types

3D Object

Viewing equipment/Film and television equipment

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Cite this work on Wikipedia

If you would like to cite this item, please use the following template: {{cite web |url=https://acmi.net.au/works/99459--keystone-stereoscopic-viewer/ |title=Paragon stereoviewer |author=Australian Centre for the Moving Image |access-date=30 January 2023 |publisher=Australian Centre for the Moving Image}}